by February 4, 2007 0 comments



With all the talk of Vista and its revamped user interface, it’s only human
for everyone to want the look of Vista on their computers. Sadly Vista’s
system requirements are quite high, especially if one wants the full GUI. There
are various paid software available such as Style XP and Windows Blinds that
give the option to change your XP to look like Vista with third party themes and
visual styles, but these software don’t really work as one-stop solutions.
Some of them change the toolbar, some change the login screen, whereas others
change the visual style. However, none of them would completely change your XP
to look like Vista, complete with boot screen, login screen, visual style,
transfer windows as well as sounds, mouse cursors and clock. Windows Vista
Transformation Pack, does all this and without any bugs or system crashes.

Direct Hit!
Applies To:
Windows XP users
Price: Free
USP: Change your XP user interface to Vista
Primary Link: www.windowsxlive.net 
Google Keywords: Vista transformation, Windows transformation

Installation
We tried version 6.0 of Vista Transformation. During installation, you get
various options to select. First of all, you need to decide whether you want to
install Vista UI to system or setup folder, the difference between the two being
that in case of latter, your XP installation files would be changed. Therefore,
it is recommended that you install Vista UI to system folder. Then you need to
go through options for your screen resolution, and select what all things you
would want to change.

It is recommended that you select all options to get the full transformation.
Once all this is done, make sure you have at least 200 MB space free on your
Windows drive and exit all running programs. Click on Transform to begin
installation. It would take 2— 5 minutes for the installation and once it’s
finished, restart your system.

You have a bevy of options
regarding graphical enhancements to choose from during the installation
process

Transforming Win XP
After your computer has restarted, and you’ve logged into your user account, a
System properties box will come up, asking you to select the visual style to be
applied. Choose Windows Aero and click on OK. After this, your revamped user
interface would boot up.

Wait for everything to load. After about a minute or so, you will see a cool
black looking taskbar, a different looking clock, and a sidebar with widgets
appearing on the right side. Your Icon set will be changed to that of Vista and
so will be the toolbars.

The fully revamped desktop provides you with changed icons in folders, a side panel with widgets, a new clock and calendar, and a shiny black taskbar with thumbnail preview option

Configuring UI
In the system tray there would be an icon resembling a penguin, from which you
can choose color schemes of the toolbar and various options regarding the
desktop such as drop shadow, icon spacing, etc. It is recommended that you leave
these settings as default.

Using the Visual tooltip icon in system tray, you can change the size of thumbnails, background color and border 

Another added functionality is that you can preview a thumbnail of minimized
programs in the taskbar by simply taking your mouse over the program. Various
settings regarding this enhancement can be controlled from another icon in the
system tray which resembles a blue and white box. Again it is recommended to
leave the settings at default.

Just like in the real Vista, here also you can choose the widgets you want to display on your desktop

Even though it is a final release, there are a couple of irksome issues with
this software. For starters, the thumbnail preview option makes the alternate
menu hide behind the thumbnail. Secondly, the address bar in folders is
completely useless; a working address bar has to be activated again by right
clicking on the toolbar and selecting the address bar.

In conclusion
The Windows Vista transformation pack consumes quite a few system resources,
which makes the boot time a wee bit slower. Most of it is due to the time taken
by the side panel and the preview thumbnail feature to start up. Other than this
minor hiccup, it is a useful utility that gives you the feel of Vista till the
time you decide to move on to the real thing.

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